American piddock (Petricolaria pholadiformis)
|Researched by||Georgina Budd||Refereed by||Admin|
|Other common names||-||Synonyms||Petricolaria pholadiformis (Lamarck, 1818), Petricola pholadiformis|
Recorded distribution in Britain and IrelandPresent along south and east coasts of England from Lyme Regis, Dorset, to the Humber. It is most common off the coast of Essex and the Thames estuary (River Medway) (Duval, 1963a; Bamber, 1985). Isolated records from north Wales and Cornwall.
Global distributionOccurs from southern Norway to the Mediterranean and Black Seas, and along the west coast of Africa from Senegal to the French Congo. In North America it ranges from Prince Edward Island to the Gulf of Mexico, and is also present in California.
HabitatPetricolaria pholadiformis is a mechanical borer into hard clay, chalk, solid mud, peat-moss and limestone from the mid-tide level to low water. Although dredged from a depth of 8 m, its occurrence in deeper water is not known (Tebble, 1967).
- Thin, brittle, equivalve and inequilateral shell.
- Beaks in anterior half, turned downwards and inwards, sometimes set back from dorsal edge.
- Shell elongate and oval in outline.
- Shell, off-white or fawn in colour, with dark brown periostracum.
- Sculpturing of concentric rings crossed anteriorly by about 40 ribs, that are spined at the anterior end.
- Ligament prominent.
- Interior of shell white, with the coarse anterior ribs showing through.
- Anterior margin of shell crenulate where the large ribs meet it, elsewhere smooth.
- Petricola pholadiformis bears a superficial resemblance to Barnea candida, but has 2 cardinal teeth in the right valve and 3 in the left valve where Barnea candida has none.
Additional informationCommon names
Petricolaria pholadiformis may also be known as the 'false angel wing'.
Method of introduction and spread
Petricolaria pholadiformis is a non-native, boring piddock that was unintentionally introduced from America with the American oyster, Crassostrea virginica, not later than 1890 (Naylor, 1957). Rosenthal (1980) suggested that from the British Isles, the species has colonized several northern European countries by means of its pelagic larva and may also spread via driftwood, although it usually bores into clay, peat or soft rock shores.
In Belguim and The Netherlands Petricolaria pholadiformis has almost completely displaced the native piddock, Barnea candida (ICES, 1972). However, there is no documentary evidence to suggest that native piddocks have been displaced in the British Isles (J.Light & I.Kileen pers. comm. to Eno et al., 1997).
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Bamber, R.N., 1985. Coarse substrate benthos of Kingsnorth outfall lagoon, with observations on Petricola pholadiformis Lamarck. Central Electricity Research Laboratories Report TPRD/L2759/N84., Central Electricity Research Laboratories Report TPRD/L2759/N84.
Duval, D.M., 1963a. The biology of Petricola pholadiformis Lamarck (Lammellibranchiata: Petricolidae). Proceedings of the Malacological Society, 35, 89-100.
Eno, N.C., Clark, R.A. & Sanderson, W.G. (ed.) 1997. Non-native marine species in British waters: a review and directory. Peterborough: Joint Nature Conservation Committee.
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Naylor, E., 1957. Immigrant marine animals in Great Britain. New Scientist, 2, 21-53.
Rosenthal, H., 1980. Implications of transplantations to aquaculture and ecosystems. Marine Fisheries Review, 42, 1-14.
Tebble, N., 1976. British Bivalve Seashells. A Handbook for Identification, 2nd ed. Edinburgh: British Museum (Natural History), Her Majesty's Stationary Office.
Wouters, D., 1993. 100 jaar na de invasie van de Amerikaanse boormossel: de relatie Petricola pholadiformis Lamarck, 1818, Barnea candida, Linnaeus, 1758. De Strandvlo, 13, 3-39.
Conchological Society of Great Britain & Ireland, 2018. Mollusc (marine) data for Great Britain and Ireland - restricted access. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/4bsawx accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-09-25.
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Fenwick, 2018. Aphotomarine. Occurrence dataset http://www.aphotomarine.com/index.html Accessed via NBNAtlas.org on 2018-10-01
Kent Wildlife Trust, 2018. Kent Wildlife Trust Shoresearch Intertidal Survey 2004 onwards. Occurrence dataset: https://www.kentwildlifetrust.org.uk/ accessed via NBNAtlas.org on 2018-10-01.
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NBN (National Biodiversity Network) Atlas. Available from: https://www.nbnatlas.org.
Norfolk Biodiversity Information Service, 2017. NBIS Records to December 2016. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/jca5lo accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-01.
OBIS (Ocean Biodiversity Information System), 2023. Global map of species distribution using gridded data. Available from: Ocean Biogeographic Information System. www.iobis.org. Accessed: 2023-11-28
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South East Wales Biodiversity Records Centre, 2018. SEWBReC Molluscs (South East Wales). Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/jos5ga accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-02.
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Last Updated: 17/10/2005